Transportation & Land Use
In the United States, transportation (cars, trucks, ships, trains, and planes) contributes 29% (2019) of all greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the largest amount of all sectors, including industry and electricity. Over half of transportation emissions come from passenger cars, medium- and heavy-duty trucks, and light-duty trucks, including sport utility vehicles. Emissions between 1990 and 2019 have trended upward as the number of vehicle miles traveled (VMT) by passenger cars and light-duty trucks increased by 48 percent during that period. Much of this growth stems from the expansion of land for economic activities and housing. The result is car-dependent sprawl.
Land use is fundamentally a responsibility of local governments – which land is developed, what is built on it, and what modes of transport are fostered to travel over it. With a focus on reducing VMT, communities can use their powers to:
- Shift from zoning which separates uses in favor of more mixed use, e.g., homes, stores, and businesses.
- Encourage building more, less expensive housing near jobs and public transportation.
- Expand zero-emissions public transit and incentivize its use.
- Build infrastructure for active transport, including sidewalks and bike paths for walking, biking, scootering, etc.
- Facilitate electrification of transit.
- Incentivize reduced use of private vehicles.
Description: Historically, cities have required a minimum number of parking spaces for each new development, residential and commercial, even in transit- rich locations. This requirement increases costs and encourages car …
Reduce or eliminate parking minimums Read More »
Description: Truly “free” (bundled) parking doesn’t exist. A glimpse into a possible future is included in a proposal that exposes the true cost of parking and properly accounts for it. …
Reduce VMT by parking fee and dividend Read More »
Description: In California, the City of El Cerrito’s San Pablo Ave. Corridor Specific Plan focuses development of housing and business along a major transit corridor to encourage walking, cycling and …
Reduce VMT by specific plans Read More »
Description: In June of 2017, the city and county of San Francisco, CA passed an ordinance to upgrade the city-owned light vehicle fleet to zero emission vehicles by 2022. It …
Upgrade city’s light vehicle fleet Read More »